EPL: Power Ranking the 20 Premier League Managers
The International break presents a great opportunity to assess the season so far.
October is a notoriously precarious month for managers and several are already on the brink of losing their job.
Other managers are exceeding expectations, with the promoted teams in particular having started brightly.
With seven games gone, here are the power rankings for the 20 Premier League managers.
20. Steve Bruce
A lot of pundits and fans felt that Sunderland would have a big season. A raft of summer transfers saw Sunderland touted as contenders for a European place.
With seven games gone, Steve Bruce is under serious pressure. A Tyne-Wear derby defeat and a string of poor performances have left fans very frustrated, and the departure of close ally Niall Quinn from the boardroom has intensified speculation that Bruce's days may be numbered.
A big home win against Stoke City aside, it has been a very poor start for Steve Bruce.
19. Steve Kean
Blackburn's poor start to the season hardly comes as a surprise. Having struggled last season, serious investment was needed in the summer.
Venky's made a strange decision when they appointed Kean last season, and fans are already protesting against his management. While Blackburn's poor form isn't entirely his fault, it is surely only a matter of time before he is sacked.
18. Owen Coyle
The early season fixtures weren't kind to Bolton. In their seven premier League matches so far, they have faced Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea.
While nobody would expect them to be fairing too well at this point given their fixture list, the home defeat to Norwich and the manner of their defeats to Arsenal and Chelsea are cause for concern.
With better fixtures ahead, Owen Coyle will be hoping to turn things around fast. The worry is where the goals will come from!
17. Roberto Martinez
Wigan always seemed likely to struggle this season after the departures on Charles N'Zogbia and Tom Cleverley.
The fixture computer was kind though, with their first three games against the newly promoted sides. Despite an easy start, Wigan are already in the bottom three, and Roberto Martinez will need to turn things around fast.
Having fought to keep Martinez in the summer it is unlikely that David Whelan would consider a change of manager. It is looking like another long season for Wigan fans.
16. Arsene Wenger
It has been a very poor start to the season for Arsenal. The 8-2 defeat to Manchester United was humiliating, and the recent defeat by rivals Spurs was another huge blow.
Panic buys and apparent squad discontent seem to suggest that Wenger is losing control, but you wouldn't bet against him turning it around.
15. Roy Hodgson
Having steadied the ship last season, Roy Hodgson will be expecting a good season. After respectable performances during a difficult start against Manchester United and Chelsea, West Brom have yet to really get going.
West Brom's only win so far is against newly promoted Norwich. Roy has some serious work to do.
14. Martin Jol
After a slow start, perhaps caused by Fulham's June start to the Europa League campaign, Martin Jol has started to turn things around.
A commendable draw against Manchester City and a thumping 6-0 demolition of QPR suggest that Martin Jol will take Fulham higher up the table very soon.
13. Mick McCarthy
After a very bright start, a run of home defeats has dampened spirits at Wolves.
Mick was unlucky not to get a draw last time out against Newcastle, and Wolves still look like a solid Premier League outfit.
12. David Moyes
Everton are only six games into their season. While David Moyes has had to work under very difficult financial restrictions, Everton look like they will perform well again this season.
11. Neil Warnock
After a last minute dash to bring in signings, it is no surprise that Neil Warnock's men have been inconsistent.
The lack of a quality finisher is a problem. So far, though, Warnock's QPR don't look to be relegation fodder.
10. Tony Pullis
Stoke have been hard to beat and have juggled European trips and Premier League fixtures quite well.
Having spent big money again, Pullis needs to perform. Defeats against Swansea and Sunderland are cause for concern, but Stoke are so solid at home that they should be pushing for Europe again next year.
9. Brendan Rodgers
Swansea seem to be finding their feet in the Premier League.
Great wins against WBA and Stoke have propelled them up the league, and the style of football has been very impressive.
8. Alex McLeish
The Villa fans may not want him, but Alex McLeish has done a good job so far.
The losses of Stewart Downing and Ashley Young haven't stopped Villa from putting together a seven game unbeaten start.
Villa haven't had the toughest of starts fixture wise. Manchester City are up next and will be a stern test for McLeish's side.
7. Kenny Dalglish
It has been an up and down start for Liverpool. Their 4-0 defeat to Spurs was particularly disappointing.
Looking at the league table, though, Liverpool will be pleased and Kenny's side look like serious top four contenders.
6. Paul Lambert
Paul Lambert's Norwich side have started really well. If it wasn't for some dubious penalty decisions, Norwich could be even higher up the table.
Norwich need to be more clinical in front of goal, but Lambert's side look very competitive at the Premier League level.
5. Harry Redknapp
Tottenham started badly, but have turned it around quickly. Harry has taken Spurs to sixth place with only six matches played.
Spurs could well be back in the Champions League next season. Keeping Luka Modric and Rafael Van Der Vaart happy may be more of challenge.
4. Andre Villas-Boas
Despite a defeat to Manchester United, Chelsea will be pleased with their start.
The biggest challenge for Andre Villas-Boas at the start of the season was to get the best out of Fernando Torres. He has managed that, and Chelsea seem to be now adapting to his style of football.
3. Roberto Mancini
Manchester City look like they will be serious title contenders this year. City have put in some quality performances.
With the money they have spent, Manchester City's good start was expected. Mancini's handling of the Tevez affair and his more adventurous playing style have brought him well-deserved plaudits.
2. Alan Pardew
After a turbulent summer, many pundits were tipping Newcastle for a relegation battle.
Seven games in, Newcastle are unbeaten and sit in the top four. They have ridden their luck at times, but they have the best defensive record in England.
Spurs will present an acid test for Alan Pardew's side at the weekend but the preseason target of a top half finish looks well within reach.
1. Sir Alex Ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson has done it again. He has rebuilt his side, and they look set for another title win.
The demolition of Arsenal, as well as the wins over Chelsea and Tottenham, have taken Manchester United to the top of the league.
Sir Alex tops the list after seven games. It wouldn't surprise anyone if he was still there at the end of the season.